Heat bursts causing damage across Kakeland

WELLINGTON, Kan. (KAKE) -

"I didn't even know the wind was blowing like that. When I opened up the front door, at first I noticed the wind and then I looked down there, and I just went, 'oh my'!"

Judy Murray says the last thing she expected to see on her front porch Friday night was her nearly 100-years-old tree. 

"That doesn't look that big up there, but when it's on the ground, it's big," she says.

As the thunderstorms died down, new storms popped up from Medicine Lodge, all the way to Wellington, where Murray lives. 

"It just didn't ever let up and then the power went off," says Murray.

These storms aren't your typical thunderstorms. They're called heat bursts and can happen after thunderstorms collapse.

"Think of it as the air from the thunderstorm as it comes down to the ground, well it gets compressed. As it compresses, it's temperature increases and that's why it's warm," says Meteorologist, Jay Prater. 

Prater says these storms bring rising temperatures and strong winds, and they come on quickly.

"As a thunderstorm is dying, you don't know the environment underneath it that would cause a heat burst. So a lot of times you're thinking, oh the thunderstorm is just dissipating and you don't realize it until the reports come in," says Prater. 

Murray says she didn't have much of a warning, but she's grateful the damage wasn't any worse.

"It didn't hit the house, it didn't hit the barn, it didn't hit any power lines," she says.

Check out these photos from across KAKEland snapped by our viewers, staff and local officials. Do you have pictures to share with us? Email them to news@kake.com.

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